April 21, 2021
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Industry Watch
Former Jack Daniel's master distiller Jeff Arnett is working with four industry experts to launch a new Tennessee whiskey venture that will drive jobs and opportunities in the area and connect with local farmers. Arnett reports the company intends to start with a wheated bourbon before moving on to gin in its second year.
Full Story: The Associated Press (4/20),  Knoxville News Sentinel (Tenn.) (tiered subscription model) (4/21) 
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Cold weather challenges Italian vineyards
(George Rose/Getty Images)
A period of cold weather has damaged vineyards in Piedmont and Tuscany, though the freezing temperatures only appear to have affected grape varieties like sangiovese and merlot, reports Antonio Michael Zaccheo Jr. of Carpineto. The same cold front brought freezing weather to France two weeks earlier, hitting 80% of the region's vineyards.
Full Story: Wine Spectator (4/20) 
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While global wine consumption dropped 2.8% in 2020 due to COVID-19, regions like Brazil saw strong gains with an 18.4% rise in consumption, based on information from the International Organisation of Vine and Wine in Paris. Overall global wine production increased slightly but remained low when compared to historical figures.
Full Story: Wine-Searcher (New Zealand) (4/21),  Food & Wine (4/21) 
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Pair your spirits with the proper lubricants
Whether you're fermenting, distilling, aging or bottling, Clarion Lubricants let you focus on the task at hand. Because our food-grade lubricants keep your system running smooth while greatly reducing the risk of contamination, recall and downtime. We'll drink to that. Find out how.
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Trends & Innovations
Natural Light is launching a line of alcoholic popsicles called Naturdays Frozen Icicles with initial offerings in strawberry and pineapple lemonade, as well as three flavored vodkas, which will be the brand's first hard liquor, later this year. The new offerings are designed to target consumers seeking variety as well as non-beer drinkers, according to Daniel Blake, vice president of US value brands at Anheuser-Busch.
Full Story: CNN (4/20),  Food & Wine (4/20) 
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Hybrid grapes developed at the University of California, Davis Campus, are providing some resiliency in guarding against Pierce's disease, an insect-spread disease that kills vines. Dr. Andrew Walker developed the resistant grapes, and early tastings indicate the vintage is promising when compared to other hybrid developments.
Full Story: Wine Enthusiast Magazine (4/2021) 
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SmartBrief Originals
Restaurants, meal kit makers and other foodservice operators have found a bright spot in the growing popularity of subscription services for food and drink, a new survey from Datassential shows. Those services, which mimic the model used by Netflix or Amazon, are primed to grow in the future and "clearly spell opportunity for all kinds of foodservice operators," writes Samantha Des Jardins of Datassential.
Full Story: SmartBrief/Food & Travel (4/21) 
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Government & Regulatory Affairs
Alabama is moving closer to drive-through beer and wine sales after the House of Representatives approved a bill sponsored by Rep. Gil Isbell on Tuesday. If passed, the law would go into effect on July 1.
Full Story: AL (Alabama) (4/20) 
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Operations
Shippers will continue to struggle with port backlogs, a lack of shipping containers and higher prices for the foreseeable future, according to an analysis by Container xChange. "The relentless pace of container shipping trade since the summer of 2020 is not easing, and this is reflected in equipment shortages in Asia and elsewhere," CEO Johannes Schlingmeier said.
Full Story: CSCMP's Supply Chain Quarterly online (4/19) 
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Urgency and patience overlap in that being patient creates the preparation and skills that are necessary when urgent action is needed, writes Scott Eblin, who relates the concepts to the yin and yang of yoga, a dance floor and a team's playbook. "You can't just keep urgently running the old pre-pandemic plays and expect them to work in a late-stage and post-pandemic world," he writes.
Full Story: Eblin Group (4/20) 
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WSWA News
Members save on EnerSys batteries and chargers
On behalf of WSWA members DSI has negotiated aggressive discounts on the Fork Lift Batteries and Chargers program offered through EnerSys. Discounts are guaranteed to WSWA wholesalers whether the products are purchased directly from EnerSys or through a dealer, OEM, or leasing company. To participate, you must initially contact DSI General Manager Ali Comeaux at 303-277-3359 or via email to get your dealer, OEM or leasing company set up with pricing. Ali can also help you obtain a quote and answer questions.
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